Cities Cleaning Up, Making Repairs After Recent Rainfall

By Geena Martinez
NewsWest 9

MIDLAND/ODESSA - After the rain moved out, it's been a bumpy ride for West Texas drivers. Pot holes are popping up everywhere and some of them are huge.

Many of you have been asking if any improvements are coming after this record rainfall.

When it rains, it pours and when that happens in Midland/Odessa, it floods too.

"First day it was about two feet inside the shop," Daniel Vega, an Odessa auto shop owner, said. "Office damage, vehicle damage everywhere, lost paperwork, lost all kinds of good stuff."

Daniel Vega spent the day cleaning up. Cars he's been working on were underwater. One had water up to the windshield.

He's lost some business. Vega barely got electricity back on Monday.

"I haven't seen it this bad in about eight years," he said. "I thought I was gonna be shut down for good."

It was the same story for some Tall City homeowners on Friday. The heavy rains caused water to flood their houses.

Now with the water soaked in the ground comes another problem: potholes.

"It's kind of like little mini earthquakes," City of Midland Transportation Manager, Gary Saunders, said. "From the continuous flow and the continuous water being on the street going through cracks that you may not see and then it breakdown and it gets larger and then it washes out."

Crews are working fast to fix them.

"They did 16 repairs and they expect to do about 16 everyday," Saunders said.

But the drainage issues will take some time.

"There's really no quick fix and it's a balancing act. We get a few events that cause flooding every year," City of Midland Engineer, David Beard, said. "All the new development has drainage features designed into the project and the problem comes in the old parts of town."

Beard said they're trying to adjust to the booming population.

"Every time you develop something it adds more water to the system and you have to account for it," he said.

Midland residents can expect to see drainage improvements near Wadley-Barron Park and on Andrews Highway in the next year.

The city also just finished a channel lining project on the Jal Draw that cost over $2 million dollars.

Big fixes like this aren't cheap and that's why the City of Odessa isn't looking at any major drainage projects in the near future.

Odessa city officials says it wouldn't be fiscally responsible for an area that only gets about 14 inches of rain on average.

But drainage repairs or not, Vega said he's here to stay.

"My family has owned this lot for about 40, 50 years and I just cant leave. It's family," he said.